Well, we finally have our salary cap number that we can compare to. The new ceiling number for the cap will be $56.7 million, a whopping $6.3 million more than the 2007/'08 season. This shouldn't come as a surprise, since the revenues of the NHL have been going up every year and teams are remaining economically viable.
The fear, however, is that there are still teams (ie. Columbus, Atlanta and Nashville) with team-enforced budgets that cannot compete with the rest of the free spending teams. Management is very important when it comes to these teams, because there are a number of teams with smaller budgets that can still make the playoffs.
Of course, with the new salary cap level going up, the bottom level has to come up as well. The floor level for teams to have to meet requirements is now up to $40.7 million.
The new top level for a player's salary is now $11.34 million per season.
Currently, the Anaheim Ducks have the highest amount of payroll against the cap amongst their active returning players. 17 players worth $50.5 million. Boston is next with 20 players at $47 million. In third place, the Dallas Stars have 14 players at $45.7 million.
On the other end of the spectrum, Columbus has 15 players at $25.2 million, Colorado has 11 players at $27.5 million and Atlanta has 18 players at $29.5 milllion.